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Scouts BSA Troop performs canoe training ahead of summer trips


By Guest Columnist Tommy Carroll

To prepare for their summer trip, Scouts from BSA High Adventure Troop 321 train how to work together to right a swamped canoe at Silver Run Lakes. In addition to righting a swamped canoe, scouts also work on general swimming, the J-stroke and other skills necessary for canoeing a fifty+-mile trek.

Scouts from Scouts BSA Troop 321 recently completed canoe training at Camp Tiak and Silver Run Lakes. Pictured are scouts working on the basics for canoe training at Camp Tiak.

Boy Scouts of America, Scouts BSA, Troop 321 from Long Beach, recently completed canoe training on two separate weekends in order to prepare for big adventures this summer.

During the months of March and April, Troop 321 completed two separate training events in order to be prepared for two upcoming treks in which the scouts will be participating in the near future. Scouts trained at the LO Crosby Reservation, known to scouts as Camp Tiak, and at Silver Run Lakes, on private property owned by family members. During the training exercises, scouts covered swimming, basic risk mitigation from potential hazards, canoe familiarization and canoe operation basics.

Scouts from High Adventure Troop 321 are preparing for two significant upcoming treks. The first trip will be a fifty-mile combined canoeing and hiking trip down the Black Creek over Memorial Day weekend. The scouts will be canoeing from Dantzler Landing to the Fairley Bridge Landing, a trek of about forty miles on the water. In order to earn the fifty-mile award, Scouts must complete a total of fifty miles over five days and perform a service project of ten hours.

Scouts will canoe the forty miles of the Creek, then hike as they do trail work, completing the remaining miles necessary in order to reach their fifty miles. This will be the second time the troop earns the fifty-Miler award. The first time was earned by hiking and backpacking the first fifty miles of the Appalachian Trail in 2018.

The second big canoeing trip will be in July, when the troop heads to Minnesota to canoe and portage the boundary waters between the U.S. and Canada. The trip to Boy Scouts of America High Adventure Base Northern Tier, in Ely, Minnesota, is a life-changing trip for scouts who make this trek.

The seven-day trek will not only include lake-canoeing, but will also include portaging, the carrying of canoes across sections of land in order to make the journey. Typical canoeing/portaging treks at Northern Tier generally range upwards of sixty miles.


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